Thursday, October 29, 2015

My Favorite Places to Run in Central New Jersey

Only 10 more days until we move across the country to sunny California. As I'm typing this it is wet outside and pouring rain, so sun and higher temps have me getting excited for our new upcoming adventure. Last week I talked about my favorite hikes in NJ, you can read that post here. This week I want to share my favorite places to run. I feel very lucky and am thankful that I got to live in an area with great trails and running paths. 

My favorite places to run in Central Jersey are:

1) D&R Canal Towpath - This is my most favorite place to run not only because it is so easy for me to get to (pretty much my backyard) but it is also such a beautiful trail. If you follow me on Instagram, the majority of my running pics originate from the trails of the D&R Canal Towpath. Of any of the trails, this is the one I will miss the most. It is such a great trail to run on. When running with a group, we usually meet up at the Turning Basin Park parking lot in Princeton. I love that this trail goes on forever. According to their website it is 70 miles and you can find a map of the whole route here.
D&R Canal Towpath Trail Princeton
2) Institute Woods Trails - You can get to these trails from the D&R Canal Towpath by crossing a creek and getting to the Swinging Bridge. The trails go by the Institute of Advanced Study and can even take you to the Princeton Battlefield. I enjoy running these trails because it is another very pretty route, especially in the fall.
Swinging Bridge on our run
3) Mercer County Park - This was where I did a lot of group runs with the MRTT (Moms Run This Town) ladies. We would start by the East Picnic area by Edinburgh Road and follow the trail and usually do a 6 mile out and back run. The route is paved but you can go off and run on trails too like the pic below where we ran to the dam. 
Running to the Dam at Mercer County Park
4) West Windsor Community Park - Great park for shorter runs (4-milers) and to meet up with friends. There is a nice slightly inclined straight-away that is great for doing 400's for speed work.
400's at West Windsor Community Park
5) Lawrenceville Hopewell Trail (LHT) - Another great trail system. It is great for not just running, but also biking, hiking, and walking. So many possibilities for routes to run. You can find the map here. I have gone through Village Park into Mercer Meadows along with Rosedale Park and in this area are lots of side trails that aren't part of the LHT but also great trails too. 
Trail at Mercer Meadows
Those are my favorite places to run. Where do you enjoy running?

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